My rugby journey

My interest in rugby began at the relatively late age of 11, soon after I started secondary school. Rugby was taught as part of the PE programme and I was identified by one of the teachers to play for the school team. Within a couple of weeks I was playing at blindside flanker for the U12 1st XV, and for the next few years I really enjoyed it. I wasn’t the most mobile of players but I could tackle and was a pretty decent ball carrier.

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After a few years playing in the 1st XV, a new coach took over and he had a completely different selection policy, based on rotation rather than performance. I kept finding myself on the sidelines for no apparent reason so by the end of that season I decided to pack it in. I went through the rest of school with a passing interest in rugby, watching the Five Nations and World Cups, but not much more.

When I left school at 18 I started working for Action Images, a sports photography agency, and that was where my interest was rekindled. The company sent photographers to various sporting events, including working as club photographer for the likes of Saracens, Harlequins, Leicester Tigers and Northampton Saints. I worked closely with the clubs, selecting the best photos for them to use in their matchday programmes and also went to matches, including England v Australia at Twickenham, to assist photographers with sending images ‘live’ to newspapers and websites.

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My role evolved into marketing but sadly after 16 years at Action Images I was made redundant in early 2015, which took me along a different path to Longmores Solicitors, and by association, Bishop’s Stortford RFC. When I joined Longmores, we had just agreed to sponsor a player in the first XV, Johnny Neville, and whilst it would have been easy for the firm to just write a cheque and then forget about it, I felt we needed to do more to activate the sponsorship. I decided to head to a home match with my camera to capture a few photos to use on our social media sites.

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From the first match I was hooked, and some of the photos I produced were included in the next matchday programme, including the front cover. The first time I arrived at Silver Leys I felt so welcome and really appreciated the community atmosphere at the club. That has continued to build over the past couple of years and I am honoured to now be the club’s official photographer. I’ve been particularly privileged to be able to photograph the team winning the National 2 South league title, as well as photo evenings and the 2018 calendar.

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I left Longmores at the end of 2017 and have now set up my own photography business. My main focus is on sports and action photography but I also have experience in commercial photography, events and portraits. Everything I shoot at Bishop’s Stortford RFC is available for purchase, whether that’s for personal use or to promote your business. For more information please take a look around my website or get in touch.

 

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